Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Prabal Gurung Inspired by Miss Havisham for the New York Public Library

The New York Public Library is celebrating the 200th birthday of Charles Dickens. The exhibition is called “Charles Dickens: The Key to Character”, and held in the Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III Gallery of the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building. The display will include works that were influenced by Dickens’ writing. Who better to contribute than PG, with his Fall 2011 collection inspired my Miss Havisham herself?!

Prabal said of Miss Havisham (to Emily Holt for “I thought there was something beautifully romantic to the subtext of that whole story, she’s in that situation forever. Everyone thinks she’s crazy, but what I found really interesting about her was the fact that she’s not giving up.”

Nicole Phelps of acknowledged ‘Gurung captured the disintegration that was central to Miss Havisham's character in a more believable way with dégradé furs that were echoed by the colored streaks the models wore in their mussed-up hair’.

And so the iconic gown – pictured – is standing in a dark corner of the Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III Gallery. A majestic red curtain marks the entrance of the exhibition, and you find yourself transported into an entirely Dickensian world. Filled with old manuscripts and personal memorabilia (also exhibited is the 1867 pocket diary containing the code with which Dickens communicated with his mistress Ellen Ternan) as well as a wide range of contemporary works inspired by Dickens’ genius, this is a great display of what inspired him, and how he has inspired others.

Fact: Dickens originally narrated his stories for a weekly magazine he ran and edited – ‘Household Words/All the Year Round’. Readers were drip fed his novels, installments coming once a week- accounting for the powerful cliff hangers with which he ends every chapter!

The Exhibition runs September 14 through Janruary 27 at the New York Public Library, Manhattan; (917) 275-6975,